Thematic Residency Program, The Ship of Theseus
Location: Toronto, Canada
Duration: November 15 -30, 2012
Cost: $850 + HST (CAD)
The Thematic Residency Program offers artists the opportunity to work independently with the mentorship of a visiting professional artist, curator or critic working in international contemporary art. For two weeks every month artists retreat to Artscape Gibraltar Point on Toronto Islands, which provides short-term accommodation and studio space for artists to research and develop their contemporary art practice. Thematic residencies explore various models including studio work, formal lectures, group discussion, peer collaboration and outdoor retreats. This direction allows individual residents to find common ground amongst each other’s disparate practices and establish new connections through communal dialogue.
Artscape Gibraltar Point is located in a 35,000 sq. ft. former school building in the unique environment of Toronto Islands, a regional park on Lake Ontario only seven minutes by ferry ride from downtown Toronto. The largest car-free community in North America, the Islands consist of naturalized areas and wildlife reserves; beaches, forests, parks and marinas are linked by numerous walking and bike paths. Toronto Islands can be biked from end to end in approximately fifteen minutes.
THE SHIP OF THESEUS
“The ship on which Theseus sailed with the youths and returned in safety–the thirty-oared galley–was preserved by the Athenians down to the time of Demetrius Phalereus. They took away the old planks and put sound timbers in their place, so that the ship became a classic illustration for the philosophers of the disputed question of growth and change; some declaring that the ship remained the same, others that it did not.” – Plutarch, Theseus XXIII. 1
This residency takes the philosophical conundrum illustrated in the paradox of the Ship of Theseus as a starting point to reflect on issues around copying, mimesis, iteration and repetition, particularly in relation to artistic objects and processes. In the parable, a ship is rebuilt as it decays, plank-by-plank until all the ‘original’ planks have been replaced. The problem that has puzzled philosophers over centuries is whether, once all the timbers have been replaced, it is still the same ship. Participants will be invited to take part in a series of readings, dialogues, guest lectures and studio visits that will expand on these themes.
Gareth LONG (MFA, 2007, Yale School of Art) lives and works in New York, New York. Recent solo exhibitions include Roman Copies & Copié Romans, Michael Benevento, Los Angeles and Never Odd Or Even, Southern Alberta Art Gallery, Lethbridge; and group exhibitions Postscript: Writing After Conceptual Art, Museum of Contemporary Art Denver and Learn To Read Art: A History of Printed Matter, Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe.
ABOUT ARTSCAPE GIBRALTAR POINT
Departing from the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal in downtown Toronto at the foot of Bay St. & Queens Quay, the seven-minute ferry ride takes you across Toronto Harbour to Hanlan’s Point. A five-minute bike ride brings you to our front door. Artscape Gibraltar Point is located at 443 Lakeshore Avenue on Toronto Islands.
Accommodations include fifteen private bedrooms with shared bathrooms, coin-operated laundry machines and Wi-Fi throughout the building. Residents share a communal kitchen with personal refrigerator space and dry storage. The kitchen is fully stocked with amenities including a stove, oven and microwave; generous counter space to prepare meals; dinnerware, flatware and cookware; and staples such as coffee, tea and sugar. A banquet table that seats eighteen sits at the center of the large bright room amongst couches and houseplants.
Studios are well-ventilated with high ceilings, tall windows and large walls. Tables, lamps and chairs are available. Facilities include a library, a black and white dark room, a woodworking studio, and a projector and PA system.
The building is located on acres of land that include a Blue Flag beach with an uninterrupted view of Lake Ontario, a forest, sprawling lawns and gardens filled with flowers, fruit and vegetables. Tennis courts and a baseball diamond are nearby. The Gibraltar Point Lighthouse, the oldest surviving lighthouse on the Great Lakes, is located across the street.